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Rep. Tom Reed (R-NY) Discusses Trump Considering Abandoning Demand North Korean Denuclearize, Trump's Making Concession to China on Huawei, the Border Aid Bill; Ivanka Trump Front-and-Center at G-20 Summit & DMZ; Lawyers File Motion to Drop Charges Against Pregnant Woman Shot in Stomach & Indicted for Death of Unborn Child. Aired 1:30-2p ET

Aired July 1, 2019 - 13:30   ET


[13:30:00] BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN HOST: He wasn't in this meeting, though, in North Korea for this meeting with Kim and Trump. Do you think it's possible? I mean, there have been some schisms between the president and Mr. Bolton recently on some foreign policy issues, Iran, for instance. Do you think it's possible he's out of the loop?

REP. TOM REED (R-NY): No, I don't think he's out of the loop. Obviously, the president is a disruptor. I think the trip to the DMZ was a good move. I think that was a great optic and a gesture that needed to be made.

But at the end of the day, a nuclear weapon in the hands of Kim Jong- Un is not something that I support, nor do I think many of my colleagues on both sides of the aisle support.

KEILAR: I want to ask you what you say to critics who -- I mean, widely, I think no one is completely panning what the president did. But there's a big concern among people in this space that he's giving away leverage over Kim by doing something like this, a photo op with North Korea, which is something North Korea really wants, without getting any concrete commitments on nukes. What do you say to that?

REED: Well, you know, as the president walked away from the summit, I'm confident the president is doing what he needs to do, based on also back-channel communications that are going on, to sending the right message. To say, look, if you want to sit at the table, Kim Jong-Un, and we want to resolve this with you not having a nuclear weapon and you resolving the differences between South Korea and America, that's something we can support.

But what the president is doing is something that's unique. It's disruptive. I think overwhelmingly he should be supported as to how he's handled the Korean situation.

KEILAR: When we saw the president on this trip, it was really noteworthy that we saw him embracing dictators. There was Putin, Kim, Xi, Mohammad bin Salman. Any concerns from you on that?

REED: Well, you know, obviously, I wish we didn't have a world where these dictators lived, but we do have to have communications with them. We do have to have relationships with them. That is just the nature of the world. I wish, on a utopic basis, we didn't have to deal with that. But at the end of the day --

KEILAR: But this complimentary? But this complimentary with these kinds of leaders?

REED: Obviously, I think what the president is doing is what Ronald Reagan did. You get to peace through strength. I don't think anybody doubts that, in America, we are not going to embrace these dictators and allow them to kill their people or deal with such things as getting nuclear weapons into their hands.

But at the end of the day --


KEILAR: Who did Ronald Reagan meet with and


KEILAR: Who did Ronald Reagan meet with and give compliments to the way President Trump has?

REED: Oh, I think -- I think you saw it with Gorbachev and Reagan --


KEILAR: But without achieving -- without achieving a foreign policy win ahead of time?

REED: Well, obviously, if you watched what happened in Iceland with Ronald Reagan and Gorbachev, when Ronald Reagan walked away, these are the kind of conversations that occur at the presidential level. I think this is a continuation of a peace-through-strength type of operation. I appreciate the president doing this.

But at the end of the day, I cannot support a nuclearized North Korea. I think many of our colleagues will send that message also.

KEILAR: The president met with Xi, so he was dealing with China issues. He said trade talks are going to resume. One of the concessions that Trump made is that U.S. companies can now sell to telecom giant, Huawei. Are you on board with that?

REED: You know, I'm a little concerned about that, but I do trust that the president is getting positive indications from China. We're going to resolve our differences with China at the table. If that is the ultimate goal of opening up these relationships, I will be supportive of that. But right now, I'm a little hesitant. I'm cautiously optimistic this was the right move.

But I will tell you the only way we'll resolve the differences with China is at the table, and that's what the president is doing.

KEILAR: I want to talk to you now about immigration, the $4.6 billion border aid bill that your bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus helped move forward.

As you know, liberal Democrats wanted guarantees about where the money would go to make sure it was directed at these terrible conditions we've heard about at detention centers at the border. You said you're confident the agencies will get it where it needs to go.

Why are you so confident in these agencies that have failed this before and an administration that has argued in court that kids don't need soap, toothbrushes or adequate sleep?

REED: Because I believe, when you have 84 Senators, dozens of Democratic Senators agreeing that this aid will accomplish this goal of relieving this humanitarian crisis at the border, that cannot be discounted, Brianna.

I saw more politics and partisan extremism in the House that was being deployed, and I was proud of our members on both sides of the aisle of the Problem Solvers Caucus that said we're going to take that. We'll push back, get the money flowing, get it flowing immediately. And the safeguards are there in the Senate bill and should have been respected by the House.

KEILAR: You think the pressure is just enough that these agencies are going to move?

REED: I think -- I think the agencies are overwhelmed with the humanitarian crisis there. This aid is going to help that.

I will tell you this. When we return to Washington, hopefully, we'll learn from this humanitarian crisis package and we will fix the root cause of the problem, which is the broken immigration system and the lack of border security mechanisms at the border.

[13:35:08] KEILAR: Best of luck on that very tall order.

Congressman, thank you so much. Tom Reed with us.

REED: We have to solve this, Democrats and Republicans. It's time.


All right. Thank you, sir.

With cameras following her every move --

REED: Thank you.

KEILAR: -- Ivanka Trump asserted herself during her father's trip to Asia, meeting with world leaders and assuming somewhat of a diplomatic role, while back in Washington, national security officials bristled. We have CNN's new reporting on this, next.


[13:40:08] KEILAR: Playing diplomat on the world stage, the president's daughter, Ivanka, taking a central role on her father's G- 20 trip.

In Japan, the first daughter was seen several times asserting herself in conversations and photo ops with world leaders, going well beyond her normal duty as a senior aide and, once again, underscoring her unusual and unprecedented prominence within this administration.

There was this moment when the U.S. and South Korean delegations lined up for a photo op leaving Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to wonder where he fits into all of this, literally. Watch.




KEILAR: The president even giving the Pompeo/Ivanka duo a nickname at one point.




Mike! Beauty and the beast, Mike.



KEILAR: And then there was this awkward moment that has now gone viral. Ivanka Trump adding her two cents to a conversation featuring some of America's biggest allies, French President Emmanuel Macron, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, British Prime Minister Theresa May and IMF Chair Christine Lagarde.



THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: A lot of people start listening who wouldn't ever listen.

IVANKA TRUMP, DAUGHTER OF PRESIDENT TRUMP: And the same with the defense side. It's very male dominant.


KEILAR: The White House also tweeted a video of Ivanka doing a readout of her father's meeting with two world leaders, which is a job usually carried out by a national security staffer in a written statement.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) IVANKA TRUMP, FIRST LADY OF THE U.S.: The Prime Minister Modi and Prime Minister Abe just concluded a meeting with the president talking about 5-G technology, particularly with a focus on the security implications. A really important meeting. And laid the foundation for a subsequent productive conversation, a one-on-one meeting between the president and Prime Minister Modi.


KEILAR: What is Ivanka's role and does it now include diplomat?

Let's bring in Kaitlan Collins at the White House and Kate Bennett. Both of them cover the White House.

Kaitlan, it's notable, Ivanka seemed to be given this equal billing as top cabinet officials. No one is questioning her intelligence, but they are questioning her qualifications. If there are security issues, if she would be in this position if she weren't the president's kid.

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: And there's questions about what role it is that she's playing here, because, of course, women's empowerment is something that is in Ivanka Trump's portfolio and that was a very overarching theme you saw at the G-20 summit. So it's not a surprise in that sense when she participated in those discussions.

The questions and the criticisms that we're hearing from current and former national security officials is the role she played in a foreign policy sense. Something as small as being in the way when the secretary of state was trying to get in the photo to those bigger things, where she's giving a readout of meetings that the president is having with other world leaders. Those are the questions that people are raising about her role.

And for some time, there's always been a lot of scrutiny and speculation about what the job is that Ivanka Trump does in the White House, because she is the president's child, as there would be scrutiny about any president's child having a top-tier job in the West Wing. There are questions about the role she played with these other world leaders when it comes to foreign policy discussions and what exactly the extent that is and whether or not she's qualified to be in these meetings.

KEILAR: And, Kate, the first lady, it was worth noting, wasn't on this trip. But it isn't like Ivanka Trump took her role. She wasn't a shadow first lady. She was more of a shadow secretary of state, even though there was a secretary of state there.

KATE BENNETT, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Right. It's just this weird, unprecedented role. We've talked about it before. It's always interesting to me, when Melania Trump is not on the trip, we see Ivanka Trump more. She spoke to the troops. She has more of a presence, a stronger presence next to her dad. I do think, though, there's something when the president says, here

comes my daughter, she's going to steal the show, beauty and the beast, teasing about Pompeo and Ivanka. There's that familiarity there that sort of is a little cringy because you want to see her, as Kaitlan just said, as this foreign policy person, as part of the administration, a senior advisor, but then there's this daddy/daughter relationship that plays in as well.

You know, I do think that she fills in for the first lady, which also is a little strange, too, in these other roles.

So it's unprecedented. And we're sort of trying to figure it out. But Ivanka Trump reading the room, having some self-awareness about that is something that she's always sort of, you know, been above and hasn't really necessarily done.

KEILAR: Yes, we saw that.

We've seen her before, Ivanka, taking a big role. She sat in for a short time with her dad at the G-20 summit in 2017. That raised eyebrows. Tell us about, Kaitlan, what the White House is saying here. They say she's being attacked. How do they feel about all of this?

COLLINS: Yes, they're pushing back strongly, saying that she's being attacked simply because she is the president's daughter, even though they're noting she's also a senior advisor to him.

But the questions are about what these meetings she's doing and compared to what other officials are doing.

[13:45:06] Because at one point, when the president was sitting down with Kim Jong-Un, one on one, during that meeting at the DMZ, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner went into one of the shelters and crossed into North Korea.

So the president wasn't the only person who made those historic first steps into North Korea. His own daughter, even though it was behind closed doors and away from the cameras, also crossed into North Korea while you saw the acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, milling around outside. The Secretary of State Mike Pompeo largely remained in the background during most of that visit until the president took questions at the end.

Of course, the White House and people close to the president will say this is representative of what Ivanka is to her father, such a close trusted advisor that she has been many years. But it's going to raise questions about exactly the role she's playing.

And also, you're seeing just how much more access and leverage Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump have now that Mick Mulvaney is the chief of staff. Because when John Kelly was here, he tried to curb that access. And I do not think he would have been someone hanging around outside while they were crossing into North Korea.

So you're just seeing the different role that they're playing now that Mick Mulvaney is running the West Wing.

KEILAR: He seems to realize that they will always be there and he should accommodate that.


KEILAR: Kaitlan Collins, thank you so much.

Kate Bennett, really appreciate your reporting online as well. Thank you.

There's outrage after a woman was shot in the stomach and then indicted in the death of her own unborn child. I'm going to speak with her attorney, next.


[13:51:24] KEILAR: A new development in the tragic story that has sparked national outrage. A court hearing has been set for a pregnant woman in Alabama, shot in her abdomen by someone else, and then indicted in the death of her unborn child.

Her lawyers have filed a motion to dismiss charges and a judge has set a hearing for July 9th, a week from tomorrow. Police say Marshae Jones started a fight with another woman who shot Jones in self- defense.

Joining me is Marshae Jones' attorney, Mark White.

Mark, thank you for being with us from Birmingham.

And this happened back in December, but your client was just charged with manslaughter last week. First off, how is she doing?

MARK WHITE, ATTORNEY FOR MARSHAE JONES: Our client is a very fragile person who has been subjected to unmitigated abuse.

You need to appreciate that two days after she was shot, while she was in the hospital recovering from the loss of a baby and her wounds, law enforcement spent 15, no more than 20 minutes with her. That is the last time anyone from law enforcement or anyone associated with prosecuting this case spoke with our client until last Wednesday, when they asked her to come to the police station. She went there in the company of her 6-year-old child, and they put the cuffs on her, locked her up and set bond at $50,000.

KEILAR: I want to talk to you about the basis for your motion, but first, can you tell us her account of what happened on that day?

WHITE: Our investigation continues. You need to realize, we were involved -- we got involved on Thursday.

I can tell you our investigation to this point discloses that there was an argument. That there had been previously been some dispute between the person that shot her and herself. Our client was unarmed. And the other person, in the course of that discussion and what was some sort of slight altercation, reached, got a pistol and shot our client.

KEILAR: Your -- you allege in your motion that this doesn't meet the mark for manslaughter, and even what the prosecutors are alleging happened doesn't meet the mark. Why?

WHITE: Well, that's because this idea that a victim can be criminally charged, having been shot and having absolutely no intention of the child being injured or killed, is, as you might expect, not a violation of the law.

The child's injuries and our client's injuries and the child's death are not the result of what our client did. They're the result of a person using a pistol to resolve an argument.

KEILAR: Is the other woman to blame? She was initially charged with murder and attempted murder. Or is no one to blame?

WHITE: We -- we do not -- she was detained originally, but our investigation, as of now, does not disclose that she has ever been charged in the criminal justice system of the state of Alabama. We don't find that case file showing that a felony warrant was obtained against her, either for what happened to our client or for what happened to the child.

KEILAR: OK. All right.

Mark White, attorney for Marshae Jones, thank you for joining us.

WHITE: Sure. Thank you.

[13:55:08] KEILAR: And coming up, $24.8 million. What a massive fundraising haul for Pete Buttigieg means for the 2020 race and the South Bend mayor's chances in the presidential race.